KARACHI: To say that Karachi, which is called the city of lights, has now turned the city of rickshaws will be right, as their number has risen to unprecedented level as compared to other means of transport.
Although there is need to regularize these rickshaws as per traffic rule, yet they have provided greater and significant relief to the people in reaching their destinations.
“Rickshaws have become luxury source of transportation for middle class people as they have now become able to reach their offices and home with ease. However, the number of big rickshaws titled Rozgar should be raised while bike rickshaws should be banned because of the fact that they are dangerous source of travel,” says Kamran, a citizen, while talking to PPI at Nipa Chowrangi on Sunday.
To a question about replacing bike rickshaws with big rickshaws, a driver of bike rickshaw, Ali Sher, told PPI that he was not ready to do so because he could not afford to purchase big rickshaw. He said: “We may consider to replace bike rickshaws if government provides reasonable financial aid and loan without interest to us.”
The influx of rickshaws in the metropolis has no doubt ended the monopoly of public transporter which brought miseries on the cities by packing them in their vehicle like animals. The public transport is still boarding commuters on seats, between seats and rooftops of the vehicles with great dare as the relevant traffic department and other responsible authorities seems comfortable and are reluctant to take any action.
The big rickshaws are easy to travel and need to be expanded to meet the needs of transportation, while bike rickshaws are not fit for transporting people. They are vulnerable to speed and jumps, and could cause any accident at any time.
It is reported that many of the bike rickshaws are stolen, and are plying illegally. There is also need to carry out checks against those.
Additional IG Traffic, Ghulam Qadir Thebo had also banned motorcycle rickshaws some time back over alleged use of stolen motorcycles and some other reasons. But were later allowed.
The rickshaws have provided some relief to the commuters to reach destination by travelling seat by seat but they are also cause of massive traffic jams at busy places and roundabouts of the city.
There is no respite from traffic jams in busiest areas of Karachi that shows failure of traffic police department. MA Jinnah Road, almost all routs passing through Saddar, Burns Road, Pakistan Chowk roads, II Chundrigar Road, roads passing along CM House and Governor House remain blocked by traffic in the evening hours except Saturday and Sunday.
Thousands of employees returning homes in the evening hours undergo torments of massive traffic jams. Even vehicles of VIPs trap in these traffic jams, showing utter negligence of traffic control department.
The commuters and drivers usually make hue and cry over the issue while traffic police personnel are seen unable and inefficient to streamline traffic flow during the peak hours.